“My personal interest for a movement is to get all people with prejudices out of power. When I say prejudice, I mean prejudices towards race, class, gender, and sexual orientation. We have gone too far as a country and we need leaders who are unbiased and want the best for the country as a whole, not just certain people.”
As part of my profile series about strong female leaders, I had the pleasure to interview Janelle Brown. Janelle was born in St. Louis, Missouri on March 16, 2001. Janelle began her musical journey at the age of 8, when she started playing different instruments such as the piano, guitar and flute. At the age of 9, Janelle became inspired by Miley Cyrus and Beyoncé: It was then that Janelle discovered her true musical passion. She loved to sing. Other artists that influenced Janelle were Justin Timberlake, and Usher. Janelle’s mother exposed her to legendary artists such as Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, and Prince. Janelle started singing when she was 10 years old, and continued to evolve and develop her skills. She’s performed at schools and recitals. Janelle was also involved in pageants, and she loves being on stage performing. Her music will be produced by Grammy Award Winning/Multi-Platinum Producer SHAM from the Trak*Starz, Chingy, Ludacris, Nelly, of the Interstellar Music Group with over 20 million sold and counting
Thank you so much for joining us Janelle! What is your “backstory”?
I grew up in St. Louis, Missouri, and I pursued my interest in music when I was 8. I played the piano, guitar, and the flute. I started singing when I was 10 and I really loved to sing. So I kept singing. When I was 14, I started working in the studio.
Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that occurred to you in the course of your music career?
The funniest story I can remember was when my mom first realized that I could sing. I had a solo part in this summer arts program when I was 10. My mother was nervous for me because she thought I would be shy and nervous. When my part came, I sang it, and I looked at my mother’s expression. She looked so shocked! After the show she was like, “Where did you get that voice?”
What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?
We are currently interviewing a number of Producers who had had recent success in the music industry. So, we plan on working with them on some new music soon.
Who are some of the most interesting people you have interacted with?
Phil Quartararo is the most interesting person in the music industry. He is the former head of Warner Music and he’s a visionary. He has such great ideas on what success looks like in today’s music scene.
Which people in history inspire you the most?
I am truly inspired by Rosa Parks. She is an extraordinary woman who stood up against racism and was a huge inspiration to the civil rights movement. She changed America forever for not only African Americans, but women also.
How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?
I feel like there is so much I have to accomplish still and I feel like I have so much I want to do to make the world a better place. I have spent time working with senior citizens and people with disabilities on my spare time. I want to continue to do that kind of work. Also, I would love for my music to be an inspiration to others. Overall, yes, I hope my music as well as my personal efforts can help make the world a better place.
You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger.
My personal interest for a movement is to get all people with prejudices out of power. When I say prejudice, I mean prejudices towards race, class, gender, and sexual orientation. We have gone too far as a country and we need leaders who are unbiased and want the best for the country as a whole, not just certain people.
What are 5 things I wish someone told me when I first started and why?
I wish someone told me that
- Not everybody is what they seem
- If it seems too good to be true, it is
- Stay focused and keep moving toward your goals
- Keep having faith because it can move mountains
- And Keep hope alive
Is there a person in the world who you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with? And why?
Yes. I would have a private breakfast with Jeff Bezos. I would want to ask about how he achieved so much success. I would also want to tell him I love Amazon and I shop on it all the time.
Originally published at medium.com